Satisficing is when you
prefer the just acceptable and minimally satisfactory to the optimal or maximal
The principle, discovered by
the Nobel prize winning economist and management theorist, Herbert Simon, helps
guide decision-making and is a cognitive heuristic (rule of thumb) within
have a low self-esteem. This leads them to believe that they can do no better.
They have a perceived lack of options (underchoice, choice underload, to
paraphrase Alvin Toffler) and an external locus of control (limited agency and
personal autonomy: "my life is determined from the outside and by others
who are often envious of me and even malicious").
Ironically, satisficers feel
entitled to accomplishments and beneficial outcomes that are incommensurate
with their indolence (Path of Least Resistance). They are not self-efficacious
and they lack ambition, but disguise it with pseudohumility, sanctimony, and
Satisficers perceive social
reality and their internal psychodynamics as largely random, arbitrary, and
meaningless (Cleckley's "rejection of life" or Peterson's
anti-humanity). Consequently they lack commitment (commitmentphobes), or
cathexis (emotional investment).
They never plan for the
future and such little planning as they do is goal-oriented (short-termism).
They maintain inordinately low standards and values which are expediently
reversed, compromised or abandoned altogether. Identity diffusion or
disturbance is common.
Satisficers are subject to
magical thinking (I think therefore it is), magical immunity (my actions or
inaction have no real-life consequences) as part of a larger suite of
essentially psychopathic traits: impulsivity, defiance, recklessness, and
novelty, thrill, or risk seeking (adrenaline junkie).
Mental illness such as
depression, anxiety, mood, and personality disorders are common among
satisficers. But, strangely, slackers and satisficers are also more content
than other personality types with the outcomes of the decisions they have
The Narcissistic Satisficer’s Credo
I am a child tyrant emperor: infantile, petulant, moody,
divine, and delusional.
I am a Wunderkind: a boastful genius.
I want just to play. Nothing else. To have fun. That's all
(shared fantasy). I renounce reality and truth.
My game is: you are my vastly inferior slaves and disciples.
You must accept me as I am. You are expected to fully forgive
and love me unconditionally, regardless of my conduct or misconduct, even when
I inevitably hurt you badly time and again.
I am immutable, opinionated, obstinate, grandiose, labile,
dysregulated, and depressive. You should not try to change or fix me or to
bargain with me: you are not my equals.
You can play only with me, unless I let you play with others
(when you are no longer my playmates, just my servants).
I am entitled to take anything I want from you. I can do to
you and with you anything I wish. You have no right to protest, decline, or
resist my demands. You are my property, my chattel to dispose of and do with as
You must obey my wishes unthinkingly and promptly, never
disagree with me, and even please me with your agony.
You have no right to expect or demand anything from me. If I
give you anything, it is because I choose to. I give only what I decide to
give, usually only as little of my time, attention, knowledge, and money as
absolutely necessary to keep you hooked and around as my playmates.
Only I decide which game we play, based on how capriciously
bored or thrilled I am at any given period.
If you are not fit to play my game, I lose all interest in
If you refuse to play my game exactly how and when I want it,
or if you make any demands whatsoever, I walk away and look for a new playmate.
Simple, really. And it works! I have had no reason to regret
any of it over the decades of my life. Compared to the overwhelming vast majority
of humanity, I am in a good place and have spent the time allotted to me on
this Earth precisely as I had wanted to: my way.